Terminator through time


The Terminator
(Bethesda, 1990) – DOS
As the first officially licensed Terminator game, you can either play as Kyle Reese and protect Sarah Connor, or you’re the Terminator and have to kill both. Apparently, the square mileage of the “3D” game is huge, representing a large chunk of central Los Angeles accurately. 

The Terminator
(Radical Entertainment, 1992) – NES
(Virgin Software, 1992) – Genesis, Sega CD
(Gray Matter, 1993) – SNES
The three versions of The Terminator follow the same basic platforming gameplay but are by no means identical. Each game follows the rough plot outline of the movie - play as Kyle Reese, run away from police officers, save Sarah Connor and stop the Terminator. Some key differences: the NES version begins with a platforming segment in the sewers OF THE FUTURE, while the Genesis version tasks you with blowing up giant robotic Hunter-Killers during the future war. And those versions destroy the Terminator with a giant steel press, unlike the SNES version which ends once you stick a pipebomb in the Terminator’s chest.

Above: A steel press dispatches of the killing machine in the NES version

Above: Same thing happens in the Genesis version

Above: However, the SNES version ends with a pipebomb to the chest

T2: The Arcade Game
(Midway/Virgin, 1991) – Arcade, Genesis, SNES, Game Gear, Game Boy, Amiga
A fairly popular lightgun game following the events of the second movie, the Arcade game utilized digitized actors from footage that was specially shot for the game. Shoot robots, cyborgs and blow the T-1000 away into molten steel. On home consoles the game utilized the Super Scope 6 for the SNES and Menacer for the Genesis.

Terminator 2
(LJN, 1991) – NES, Game Gear, Master System, Game Boy
(Ocean, 1991) – Amiga
(Flying Edge/LJN, 1991) – Genesis, SNES
If you notice those release dates, you’ll see that T2 actually hit shelves on every major platform before the Terminator platformer games were developed (not surprising considering the sequel was out in theaters at the time). And again, each game provided slightly different gameplay, even though they followed the events of the film closely. Essentially, the levels were made up of side-scrolling beat ‘em up stages and some driving levels. Our favorite gameplay idea? If you shot hospital employees in the knees in the NES version, you’re rewarded with a better gun at the end of the level.

Above: Punch and kick the T-1000 into molten steel in the NES version

Above: Shoot your chaingun at the lava monster in the SNES version

Above: Engage in fisticuffs on the Amiga. Be sure to knock his block off

Terminator 2: Judgment Day – Chess Wars
(Capstone Software, 1993) – DOS
Wow. Terminator characters… in a futuristic battle for humanity, the planet and all civilization as we know it… played out in a game of chess. That’s only slightly more epic than playing against the Grim Reaper.

Above: The eternal battle 

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  • KakashiXIII - May 19, 2009 11:11 p.m.

  • GearsofRabies - May 20, 2009 12:33 a.m.

    no the story to TSCC isn't unfollowable. try harder. other wise great article shane.
  • vitoruss - May 20, 2009 12:57 a.m.

    lmao "Is that an AT-AT in the background?"
  • SunshineHobo - May 20, 2009 1:39 a.m.

    Another Seventh Seal reference, yay!
  • phoenix_wings - May 20, 2009 2:29 a.m.

    I remember my friend was absolutely terrified of the original Terminator. Nightmares and stuff. Granted we were like 5 at the time. I really liked T2 though--enough to read the article, but not enough to play any of the Terminator games. Recaptcha: Recital borg
  • jamminontha1n2 - May 20, 2009 3:05 a.m.

    @Shane: Why did you have to go there? I am sure there were a lot of people who enjoyed that show. Just not enough tho.
  • JohnnyFirebird - May 20, 2009 3:16 a.m.

    Man, I always wanted to play those Bethesda Terminator games but the 286 I was rocking at the time just couldn't cut it. (Look it up, kids, that previous sentence does make sense.) Robocop Versus Terminator and the Terminator Genesis games were both awesome in their own ways. If licensing fees hadn't made the prospect unviable, I'd be up there trying to do a petition to get all those games on virtual console. The Genesis Terminator game is about four levels, though. But great graphics for the system. Had a very Euro feel.
  • GearsofRabies - May 20, 2009 3:18 a.m.

    god shane do you have to salt my wounds like that....sob.....
  • Ravenbom - May 20, 2009 3:19 a.m.

    The resistance needs to send someone back in time to stop Fox from creating American Idol.
  • FlashGoron - May 20, 2009 4:05 a.m.

    The Terminator tv show takes place between T2 and T3. That's way it acts like T3 did't happen, because the events haven't happened yet!
  • WaywardRenegade - May 20, 2009 4:10 a.m.

    or stop Fox from making sequels to good movies and adaptaions of comics, videogames, and novels. ALL adaptations and most sequels Fox produce blow big floppy donkey d***.
  • WaywardRenegade - May 20, 2009 4:12 a.m.

    Someone should do an article about that.
  • gmilf71 - May 20, 2009 4:20 a.m.

    @ravenbom they not only need to send a terminator back for that, but they need to just send a terminator back to destroy fox altogether.
  • NipplesTheSuperHippo - May 20, 2009 6:21 a.m.

    Lolz, I never knew there was soooooo much Terminator crap. I knew about the movies and the T.V. show, also the first couple of games, but crap, there was way more Terminator stuff than what was needed.
  • pikachu2000 - May 20, 2009 12:40 p.m.

    All of you seem to forget to mention that in the Genesis/Sega CD version of Terminator 1, you only get one life to live for the entire game. No saving, no mid-level checkpoints, no continues. You must go through the whole game in one try, in one long night. Expect a whole lot of anger that is sadly missing from today's games. (I think that today's games are too damn spoiled by these f****** save points and save anytime anywhere schemes. Give us a game without saving or holding our hand for once, yeesh).
  • Red - May 20, 2009 2:24 p.m.

    I went and saw the T2 3D experince thing at Universal Stuidos back when I was a kid. Most terrifying thing ever at the age of 10.
  • big rudy - May 20, 2009 9:18 p.m.

    its not that you couldn't follow the plot in sarah conner chronicles, its just that it didn't HAVE one. i mean really it was like after a while they just said "fuck, we have so many episodes to make, but we don't know what to do with them, screw it, just make up random shit until the finale".
  • jar-head - May 21, 2009 10:34 p.m.

    wait, concelled wtf? the Show ended with a t-1000 female Helping the resistance? And john is sent forward to the future? then after the credits theres another spark, and you hear Sarah saying he loves him. the end? Then you have dollhouse? wtf? dollhouse=the Matrix, but with tramps...
  • Demonflare - May 22, 2009 8:35 p.m.

    When I was little, my dad make me watch Terminator with him...BORING! I fell asleep. Wasnt interesting to me. Still is today.

Showing 1-20 of 39 comments

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